Does your fido or fluffy have bad breath? That offensive odor could signify serious health risks for you beloved companion. February is National Pet Dental Month; which is a good time to paws & consider getting your dog's teeth or cat’s teeth cleaned!
Here are the top 10 things you need to know:
#1 Periodontal disease is the #1 diagnosed problem in dogs & cats. By age 3, 85% of dogs & cats are affected with some level of dental disease.
#2 If your pet has bad breath this is a good indicator of advanced periodontal disease & you should have them examined.
#3 If your dog or cat has their teeth cleaned without anesthesia or dental x-rays they may appear to look shiny & new; but there is a lot lurking below the gum line that is not being addressed.
#4 Common painful problems include:
- broken teeth & roots
- periodontal disease
- dead teeth
- feline oral resorptive lesions
#5 Dental disease is a common health problem in our companion animals with potentially severe health implications. Periodontal infections have been linked to serious health conditions such as kidney disease, liver disease, worsening heart damage to those with pre-existing conditions, blood clots, and insulin resistance.
#6 Oral cancer is the 4th most common place for cancer & periodontal disease can leave them higher at risk.
#7 Your pet is a master of disguise when it comes to pain. They may be eating normally, & not showing any obvious signs that their mouth is in pain. But trust us- loose teeth, periodontal disease, gingivitis and broken teeth are painful & need treatment.
#8 It is ideal that you brush your pet’s teeth daily. Watch our guide on how to brush your dog’s teeth or cat’s teeth. Owners be aware- some pets have advanced dental disease. Without assessment, professional cleaning & addressing any major disease, at home brushing can be painful & uncomfortable for both pets & owners. If there is any concern, your pet’s dental health should be assessed.
#9 Pet dental food & treats can be an easy, convenient solutions; however, they typically only clean the tips of the teeth. A combination of brushing and feeding dental food is recommended in-between dental visits, but cannot replace the care of a professional.
#10 Routine cleanings, including dental x-rays to identify underlying problems, help prevent periodontal disease and allows a complete oral exam screening.
Your pet does so much to make you smile. Why not do something to help theirs? To learn more about dental services, please contact your veterinarian to help ensure your pet a longer, happier, healthier life. Now that’s something to smile about!
This blog post first appeared on: The Drake Center